Singer Mary Black admitted to ’war zone’ Dublin hospital, sister tells Seanad

Senator Frances Black witnesses old people crying in pain and for their loved ones

Senator Frances Black  said  conditions in a Dublin hospital where her sister, singer Mary Black, was admitted resembled a “war zone”. Photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons/THE IRISH TIMES

Senator Frances Black said conditions in a Dublin hospital where her sister, singer Mary Black, was admitted resembled a “war zone”. Photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons/THE IRISH TIMES

 

Singer Mary Black was admitted to the emergency department of a Dublin hospital that resembled a “war zone’’, her sister has said.

Independent Senator Frances Black told the Seanad on Wednesday doctors and nurses were trying to walk around trolleys. “They could hardly move with the trolley situation,’’ she added. “The old people there were crying out in pain and for their loved ones.’’

Ms Black said her “heart went out” to the doctors and nurses.

She said Mary had taken very ill on last Tuesday night and was given a letter from her doctor stating she had to go to the emergency department immediately.

She had a condition known as Ramsay Hunt syndrome, which Ms Black said was like shingles in the ear and carried the risk of losing hearing or facial paralysis.

“She was as weak as a kitten and she sat in the emergency department,’’ Ms Black added. “Eventually I got a very nice nurse to bring her in and get her on a trolley because she was about to faint.’’

It was 8pm and her sister was to be put on intravenous antibiotics straight away, she added.

“Unfortunately, she did not get to see a doctor until 7am the next morning and did not receive antibiotics until 8am,’’ Ms Black said.

She said her sister was since discharged from hospital and she hoped she would be okay.

“I am not just talking about Mary,’’ she added. “What I really want to talk about is what I saw in there.’’

Ms Black called on Minister for Health Simon Harris to come into the Seanad and give an update on the progress made in the emergency departments in hospitals all over the country.